|Mon, Dec 09, 2013 01:38 PM
|Issue of November 27, 2013
August 14, 2013 | 10:51 AM
In a county rich in history, the Harrison County Board of Commissioners and county council should support the Morvin's Landing park request and make it a historical/recreational park for all to enjoy, forever.
The Morvin's Landing area just east of Mauckport along the river was the site of Confederate Gen. John Hunt Morgan's entrance into Harrison County on his way to Corydon, where the Battle of Corydon took place.
After seeing the impressive large crowd that gathered for the re-enactment of the battle in July, it's evident folks are interested in all aspects of the battle, and the Civil War, in general, and another park with historical value regarding the war will only help draw more people into the county.
Do you think Morvin's Landing should become a Harrison County park?
In Brandenburg, Morgan's forces captured the John B. McCombs and the Alice Dean steamboats then crossed over to Indiana at the proposed site of the Morvin's Landing park.
Morgan burned the Alice Dean and sent the John B. McCombs on its way before heading away from the river and north to Corydon, where he met about 450 members of the Harrison County Home Guard in the Battle of Corydon.
Re-enactments of this event could be portrayed at the proposed park site, again drawing residents and outsiders to an area of the county that doesn't see many visitors.
Taking advantage of the riverfront access, the county could place the long-debated boat ramp at the park site as long as it is feasible.
Morgan's raid is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to history at the site.
Many of Corydon's founding fathers, including Harrison Heth, entered the county at Morvin's Landing.
It was also a transport area for those slaves on the run on the underground railroad and was the site of a ferry point up until 1966 when the Matthew E. Welsh bridge was constructed.
It appears the most the county would have to pay for the purchase of the land would be about $139,000, but it could be less if the Harrison County Community Foundation agrees to pay more than what was initially requested.
The parks department, in conjunction with the legacy committee of the county's bicentennial committee, plans to apply for the Indiana Bicentennial Nature Trust, which will pay for half of the appraised value of the property. The project has been described as unique and compelling by the trust's administrator.
It's also in a region of Harrison County that lacks a county park (the closest being South Harrison Park near Elizabeth or Hayswood Nature Reserve just outside of Corydon). The county has 45 miles of river frontage but no public access, much less a county park, at any point along the river.
The site offers everything the county wants, plus an avenue to pay for a good chunk of the property cost.
County officials should approve the funding which would provide an everlasting resource for Harrison Countians and add to an already spectacular parks system.